The extracts on this page are taken from selected national newspapers. The views expressed here do not necessarily reflect the views of Manchester United.
The perfect 10?
Ten. The number for perfection. Synonymous with the shirts of football heroes Pele, Maradona and Platini. Today it is Rooney and Messi. In the Latin and European worlds they symbolise the dreams of millions. Boys from the streets and ghetto who have made it good and are getting better and better. The question on everyone's lips, though, is who really is the best? Lionel Messi's imperious performance against Stuttgart on Wednesday steered Barcelona through to the Champions League quarterfinals. The Argentina forward has 31 goals in all competitions and strike partner Thierry Henry says his form is 'ridiculous'. “It's fair to compare him to Maradona.” Maradona graced the Nou Camp too and if Messi sits comfortably alongside his fellow Argentinian, Wayne Rooney's galloping hooves must be within earshot. Rooney has 32 goals in 43 games this season in all competitions. He has added a ruthless side to his game and is the undeniable driving force behind United's push for Premier League and European glory.
Later in the above piece, former Reds defender Gerrard Pique (now at Barcelona) said of Rooney: “Wayne is world class. He is the most powerful player I have seen and now he has added the goals he is more dangerous. He is a genius and his mentality is very strong. It sets him apart.”
Elsewhere, there’s coverage of Owen Hargreaves’ successful Reserves comeback in The Guardian, The Telegraph, The Independent and The Times.
In The Sun, Michael Carrick has been speaking about his World Cup ambitions. “Hopefully I will be hitting form at the right time and stake a claim. I have got to be striving to have a good end to the season. I have just got to play the best I can and put my case forward. Everyone wants to start.”